Winners announced for the 2023 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards

Monday 22 May 2023

The winners of the $350,000 NSW Premier’s Literary Awards were announced tonight, with Debra Dank’s debut We Come With This Place taking out a record four of the 14 prizes.

NSW Premier, The Hon. Chris Minns MP said: “Our Government is pleased to celebrate our most talented writers and I’m thrilled that this year’s awards in particular highlight the incredible achievements of Gudanji/Wakaja woman, author Dr Debra Dank. On behalf of the NSW Government, I congratulate all winners and shortlisted authors of the 2023 Awards whose works inspire, educate and delight readers and writers alike.” 

State Librarian John Vallance added: “We’re delighted that our new Government is continuing the long-standing tradition of support for our writers and those who read their work. The best way for us all to judge the strength of this year’s writing is to buy the shortlist and get reading.” 

According to Senior Judge, Jane McCredie: “This year’s awards celebrate the courage, diversity and sheer brilliance of contemporary Australian writing. Our judges assessed a record 856 entries exploring a huge range of styles and subject matter. It’s exciting to see so many debut works recognised this year, and we look forward to hearing more from these writers in the future.” 

The 2023 prize winners are: 

  • Book of the Year ($10,000)
    We Come With This Place by Debra Dank (Echo Publishing) 
  • Christina Stead Prize for Fiction ($40,000)
    Women I Know by Katerina Gibson (Scribner an imprint of Simon & Schuster Australia) 
  • Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-fiction ($40,000)
    We Come With This Place by Debra Dank (Echo Publishing) 
  • Kenneth Slessor Prize for Poetry ($30,000)
    The Singer and Other Poems by Kim Cheng Boey (Cordite Books) 
  • Patricia Wrightson Prize for Children’s Literature ($30,000)
    The First Scientists: Deadly Inventions and Innovations from Australia’s First Peoples by Corey Tutt and Blak Douglas (Hardie Grant Explore) 
  • Ethel Turner Prize for Young People’s Literature ($30,000)
    The Upwelling by Lystra Rose (Hachette Australia) 
  • Nick Enright Prize for Playwriting ($30,000)
    Whitefella Yella Tree by Dylan Van Den Berg (Griffin Theatre Company/ Currency Press) 
  • Betty Roland Prize for Scriptwriting ($30,000)
    Blaze by Del Kathryn Barton and Huna Amweero (Causeway Films) 
  • Indigenous Writers’ Prize ($30,000)
    We Come With This Place by Debra Dank (Echo Publishing) 
  • Multicultural NSW Award ($30,000)
    The Eulogy by Jackie Bailey (Hardie Grant Books) 
  • NSW Premier’s Translation Prize ($30,000 — biennial award)
    People from Bloomington by Budi Darma, translated by Tiffany Tsao (Penguin Classics) 
  • UTS Glenda Adams Award for New Writing ($5,000 — sponsored by UTS)
    We Come With This Place by Debra Dank (Echo Publishing) 
  • University of Sydney People’s Choice Award ($5000 — sponsored by University of Sydney)
    Every Version of You by Grace Chan (Affirm Press) 
  • Special Award ($10,000)
    Bankstown Poetry Slam 

Read the judges' comments

Shop the winning and shortlisted books